I was reading the English version of the Asahi Shimbun the other morning when this article caught my attention. There's nothing really new about hybrid buses, even GMC makes them, but how about a plug-in hybrid bus you don't have to plug in. That's something you don't see everyday. At least not yet anyway. Such a bus just began a two-week testing period at Haneda airport in Tokyo's Ota Ward and will travel between terminals, morning and afternoon, covering a route of 4.2 kilometers (2.6 miles). According to the rather brief article the bus can charge "a large amount of electricity without using cords". I did some digging and with the help of the magic Google translator genie I found a few more details.

According to information gleaned from a "translated" web page from the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, the bus is part of a core collaboration by government, industry and academia to implement next-generation low-pollution vehicles. Equipped with lithium-ion batteries and with a projected CO2 savings of 60 percent over a traditional bus, this Hino beast of burden definitely falls into that category.

Now, about that cordless charging. Apparently it is using an electromagnetic inductive charging setup. There is a coil on the bottom of the bus and also one embedded in concrete. The efficiency and speed of the charging system is not stated and I couldn't tell whether or not it employs magnetically coupled resonance. Once I master Japanese I will make some calls and inquire further.

[Source : Asahi]

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